Medical circumcision services expanded to Katutura

12 Sep 2018 15:20pm
WINDHOEK, 12 SEP (NAMPA) – About 14 100 men and boys in Khomas have undergone Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision (VMMC) since the start of the programme in the region since 2009, Khomas Governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua has said.
The governor revealed this during the official handover and launch of the VMMC clinic at the Katutura Health Centre.
Before the extension of the service to the Katutura Health Centre, circumcisions were only performed at the Windhoek Central Hospital’s casualty department, where it competed with other needs for the same space, McLeod-Katjirua said.
“The VMMC clinic at the Katutura Health Centre has the capacity to perform 20 circumcisions per day,” she said.
The new facility also offers blood and sugar testing, blood pressure assessments, testing for sexually-transmitted infections, including HIV, as well as reproductive health counselling.
The governor further noted that there are 16 private health facilities in the Khomas Region where VMMC services are offered for those without medical aid.
“This great partnership has been made possible with the support of USAID through AIDSFree and has enabled over 35 000 men and boys to access medical circumcision in private clinics,” McLeod-Katjirua said.
In the current financial year alone, 11 365 men and boys were circumcised at private clinics in Khomas with an adverse event rate of 0,7 per cent, which is reported to be well below the acceptable rate.
Speaking at the same occasion, United States Ambassador to Namibia, Lisa Johnson said VMMC coverage in Khomas has increased to 45 per cent among men aged 15 to 29 years.
“This means more than 1 000 new HIV infections have been prevented,” Johnson said.
Artist Mushe Ulenga, who performed at the event, said men and young boys should go for circumcision, adding that he underwent the process earlier this year.
“Circumcision is very important. Please do not be scared off by the temporary pain as the advantages thereof outweigh the disadvantages,” he said.
The national strategy is to reach 80 per cent of men and boys between the ages of 10 and 49 with VMMC services by 2021, which translates into 300 000 males by the targeted period.